Exploring Outdoor Classroom Learning as an Extension of Indoor Classroom Learning in Preschool

  • Azizah Affendi Faculty of Human Development, Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris, Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
  • Abdul Halim Masnan Faculty of Human Development, Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris, Tanjong Malim, Perak, MALAYSIA
Keywords: early childhood education, outdoor classroom learning, holistic development, outdoor education, preschool teacher

Abstract

Early childhood education (ECE) classrooms are under pressure and stress due to the domino effect on primary school preparation and the curriculum's focus on academics, particularly early literacy, and numerical competence. In recognizing the significance of outdoor experiences for children, the study aims to gain an overview of preschool teachers' diverse viewpoints and experiences in exploring outdoor classroom learning as an extension to classroom learning. This qualitative case study interviewed six preschool teachers on their perspectives and experiences with learning outside the classroom. It comprises a thematic analysis of data from semi-structured interviews with preschool teachers. Two themes emerged from the thematic data analysis, which describes teachers' thoughts and experiences. The study's findings revealed that preschool teachers demonstrated a fundamental understanding of outdoor education and offered well-targeted examples of numerous implementations of learning methodologies outside the classroom. Most consider outdoor classroom learning more than environmental education, but a multidimensional approach combined with various goals, philosophies, and actions. Outdoor education, according to teachers, benefits children and has a significant value for children's holistic development significant constraints were discovered, including appropriate locations, insufficient infrastructure, materials, time constraints, staff resources, and inadequate pedagogical skills and training. Furthermore, the most troubling aspect is parents' attitude and the absence of support from authorities, such as the necessity to realign the curriculum and policies.

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Published
2022-09-15
How to Cite
Affendi, A., & Masnan, A. H. (2022). Exploring Outdoor Classroom Learning as an Extension of Indoor Classroom Learning in Preschool. Evaluation Studies in Social Sciences, 3(2), 10-24. https://doi.org/10.37134/esss.vol3.2.2.2022